Best known as one of the leading experts on Pioneer’s CD gear, DJ and producer Rob Anderson opens up in our quick-fire Q&A.

If you weren’t making music what would you be doing?

God knows. Making music and DJing is what directed me towards working at Pioneer DJ, so I can’t really even say that I’d be working here. Nothing else was ever really an option to me.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?

It wasn’t directed at me, but this quote by Giorgio Moroder always made sense: “Work with great musicians. Be meticulous. If you don’t have something good within three hours, move onto the next idea. Make ten songs, one of them will be good.”

What inspires you?

I’d like to say partying and watching DJs, but to be fair that’s not really that helpful. Probably watching music documentaries. Watch the life story of Hendrix and you wanna get straight in the studio.

What’s the next big thing?

Pioneer Rekordbox DJ software (shameless plug)…

…and the Under No Illusion Records Miami sampler featuring my track ‘Preachin E’s’ – out now (another massively shameless plug).

Best club experience?

The first time I went to The Cross in London. I don’t know what year or which party it was, but I remember D Ramirez was playing, before he blew up, and I’d just got my first phone with a camera on it! So it was a while back. Theres actually a video knocking around that we edited from the phone clips. Good memories, man.

What’s the worst job you’ve ever had?

There’s been a few… Digging up and replacing the loop feeder cables that run underneath the M25 was hands down the worst though. Literally covered in shit from start to finish!

How do you know when a track’s finished?

I’m finally at a stage where I’m finishing quite a lot of music. It’s more a case of having a deadline now though than deciding a tune’s finished. If I was told I had six months to work on a track I’d probably use the full six months.

What was your last day job and when did you realise you could give it up?

I still work full time at Pioneer DJ Europe as a Product Specialist. It would take a lot for me to leave my job here.

Which song do you wish you wrote?

That Christmas one by Noddy Holder. He’s minted from that!

What’s the worst track you’ve ever released?

I made a track for a TV advert in Germany… I won’t play it to you.

Recommend us a film.

Source Code, Butterfly Effect, Man On Fire – all amazing films. They’re all to do with time travel as well, but don’t tar me with the Doctor Who brush!

Recommend us a book.

Making Music – 74 Creative Strategies For Electronic Music Producers by Dennis De Santis.

What or who is underrated?

I saw Kink using a Numark Orbit to great effect recently… Massively underrated little unit!

What or who is overrated?

Rizzle Kicks and Julia Roberts. They’re not that good, and she’s not that fit.

What are you addicted to?

Prunes. Fuck me, they’re banging!

What one thing would most improve your life?

More sunny days than cloudy ones. I’m still working on that.

What’s the worst gig you’ve ever played?

One of them gigs where you go home thinking you never wanna DJ again! There’s been loads over the years, thankfully not for a very long time.

Collaboration: rich creative experience or pain in the ass?

Depends with who. Are they a good producer or are they a pain in the arse?

What’s the secret to a great mix?

I’ll let you know when I master it.

If you could only listen to one more track, what would it be?

‘Missing’ by Everything But The Girl. I remember it coming out when I was a kid, but it still gets me. It never gets tired. Ben Watt knows his shit.

What one piece of software/kit could you not do without? Why?

I switched to Ableton last year, and I’d be lost without it now. Also too many UAD plugins to list them all, but the Thermionic Culture Vulture, EMT 140 and 250 and the SSL E Channel Strip get used on every track.

Art or money?

I’ll have both please.

Must-read blogs/forums?

Not just saying it, Attack Magazine is sick! Also Harder Blogger Faster, Data Transmission, DJ Worx and DJ Tech Tools. Go-to sites for info on anything new.

What’s your single biggest frustration in the music industry?

Bell ends.

What’s your favourite label? Why?

Every release on Apollonia has been quality – great music, very distinctive.

Tweet us a tip. What’s the best production advice you can give in 140 characters or less?

Get in studio and do it, get ideas down, ask advice from people who know their shit, practise and get good.

What’s your motto?

Hmmm… Never thought about it before. The scouts have a good one, though. Lets go with that.


Rob Anderson’s ‘Preachin Es’ is out now on Under No Illusion’s Miami Sampler. Find him on Facebook, Twitter and SoundCloud.

5th April, 2016

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